A little while ago, I posted this lovely cover and wondered who the artist was.

Special Feature #11

I posted over at the Classic Comics forum at CBR and got a list of suggestions, none of whom seemed quite right. Then, out of the blue, I got an e-mail telling me that the artist was Lee J. Ames. Ames has worked in many areas of the graphic arts over the years. He’s worked for Disney, dabbled in comics, and is best know today for his series of How to Draw books.

To try to get to the bottom of the story, I e-mailed Ames.

Gorilla Daze: I recently posted this great cover and have been trying to discover the identity of the artist. It’s been suggested to me that you are the mystery artist. Can you confirm this?

Lee Ames: Samson and Delilah! That was a long time ago, but, yes, I’m the guy that did it! “King Solomon’s Mines,” is another comics cover I’ve done.

GD: It’s a wonderful image, one of my favourite comics covers of all time

Ames: Thank you for the nice things you have to say about my stuff. It’s made my day.

GD: Did you do a lot of comics work, or was it something you just dabbled in occasionally?

Ames: What I do and/or did is pretty well covered in my two old web sites, www.draw50.com and www.leeames.com.

GD: What was it like working for Victor Fox?! (note: Fox was a Golden Age publisher notorious for his sleazy output)

Ames: I never met the publisher, Fox. I dealt with his art director, Hi Vigoda (the brother of the American actor, Abe Vigoda). Hi did say that Fox would like to see anything sexy in the art that we could get away with. Ergo Delilah’s left thigh and calf looking like a lady’s lovely behind! By the way, had you noticed that Samson seems not to have a right leg?

On putting Samson and Delilah into Google.Images, you’ll find one of the posters I used for reference.

GD: Thanks, Lee.

So, there we are, mystery solved. The cover artist for Special Feature #11 was Lee J. Ames.

And, here’s the King Solomon’s Mines cover that Lee mentions, published by Avon in 1951:

King Solomon's Mines